More Cisco Channel M&A: ePlus Buys Pacific Blue Micro

Financial terms were not provided. Pacific Blue Micro (PBM) marks the second Cisco-centric acquisition by Herndon, Va.-based ePlus in as many months following its January buy of Bedford, N.H.-based VantiCore.

EPlus is a Cisco Gold partner and has Cisco Master specializations in both security and unified communications, as well as managed services, and a full complement of Cisco advanced specializations and Authorized Technology Provider designations. It also has top relationships with vendors such as Hewlett-Packard, NetApp and VMware and a thriving services practice.

PBM, founded in 1982, is a Cisco Gold partner with specializations in unified communications, IP security, mobility and data center and has top partner statuses with APC by Schneider Electric, VMware, Symantec and NetApp and certifications with IBM, Pillar Data Systems, Alert Logic, Dell and others. The company is a nine-time winner of Cisco's Gold Star for customer satisfaction.

[Related: VAR 500 Blockbuster: Presidio To Acquire BlueWater Communications ]

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Both solution providers appear on CRN's Tech Elite 250 list.

"The combination of ePlus and PBM provides a path for new and existing clients in Southern California to leverage ePlus' strengths and unique capabilities in conjunction with PBM's proven track record as a prominent value-added reseller and integrator with one of the leading Cisco practices in the SoCal market," Philip Norton, ePlus chairman, CEO and president, said in a statement.

"We are confident that both our customers and employees will benefit from the joint expertise of PBM and ePlus, including proven implementation methodologies, an expanded portfolio of solutions and services, and comprehensive engineering delivery capabilities while maintaining the highest level of customer satisfaction," added Bill Uncapher, PBM's CEO.

The wave of acquisitions has been a boost for ePlus, which reported 18.5 percent year-over-year revenue growth in its fiscal third quarter, coming in at $272.6 million. Norton said during ePlus' earnings conference call in early February that the acquisitions had brought ePlus more than 400 new customers.

EPlus has been one of the most active participants in a recent wave of major M&A moves involving top communications, networking and data center-focused solution providers. Among other major deals, Presidio followed up its fall 2011 acquisition of INX with the acquisition of BlueWater Communications Group this week, Strategic Products & Services continued its land grab in the Avaya channel with Imagine Technologies in December, and two of Canada's largest solution providers and top Cisco partners, Softchoice and Unis Lumin , merged in November.